|News | Published 03 March 2009|
This week's featured game comes to us from the Italian company, Nexus. Nexus is known for the War of the Ring board game, Moto GP, Wings of War, as well as the awesome new Age of Conan game, but the game in the spotlight this week is Micro Mutants. Micro Mutants is a game of microscopic warfare pitting four different races of bugs against each other for dominance. Micro Mutants is one of Jaffer Batica's favorite games. Jaffer is our Marketing Manager and has overseen many conventions all over the US. "It looks so simple: just tiddle the winks at each other until somebody's base blows up, right? Well, apart from the natural finesse you have to bring to the table just to make the little plastic discs jump the way you want them to, you also have to take into account the strategy - which units to activate, where to deploy them - just like any other wargame."
The game is very simple to pick up and learn. Each turn you will roll two dice to determine which of your mighty insect soldiers to send forth. Then play proceeds like tiddly winks, launching your bugs through the air. Any opposing insects unfortunate enough to be under them when they land are eliminated. This takes a fair amount of practice, but watching your Kommissar take out a Centurion is well worth the wait. Also available as targets for your chitinous horde are your opponent's bases. These hexagonal bases represent the factories and munitions your opponent has available. If you ever run out of bases, you are out of the game.
Each faction in Micro Mutants has a different flavor and feel to them. The Chitinians feature a heavy emphasis on firing projectiles at their opponents. They can shoot both acid and webs to either melt or trap enemy bugs. The alien Flyborgs are the masters of manipulation. They have a heavy focus on moving their own bugs, as well as the opponents bugs. The Sovietopters have a good blend of options with their tanks able to fire flame projectiles, and the Kommisars are able to bring back their own bugs every time they kill an enemy bug! The U.S. Arthropods have a little bit of everything. They feature some bugs that can fire projectiles, some that can move other bugs, some that can snipe at other bugs without being targetable themselves, and even some that can attack twice.
For those who are proficient at the bug flipping, there are advanced rules available. Each faction has a set of upgrades they can purchase. ie. The Sovietopters have an upgrade they can purchase, Forward Comrades!, which lets them move any bug on the roll of a red star. Normally they can only move two specific bugs on a red star result, but with the upgrade, the options are wide open. These upgrades are purchased by accumulating gems and improving your bases. Each base has two different upgrades available. In the above example the Forward Comrades! upgrade is attached to the factory. A 2nd upgrade of the factory will net you Power to the People, which lets you move two workers every time a worker is rolled!
Also included in the advanced rules are the terrain templates. These new features are placed on the mat and each one provides a different in game effect. ie. The Gravity Manipulator eliminates any bug that lands on it. However, it lets the owning player launch a handful of meteors onto the playing field! Anything these meteors hit is eliminated, allowing one player to remove a number of enemy bugs with a well thrown turn.
Micro Mutants is quick to pick up and play. Games last about 30 minutes and clean up is a breeze. As each faction has different abilities for each bug, and each faction also has a number of upgrades, Micro Mutants has a ton of replay value.
So grab your flipper and send forth your insectoid minions. There is a microscopic war to be won!
Put me in the camp for wanting an expansion. It's long overdue.
Any chance the mantis expansion will be published in the U.S.????
This probably would have been my staff favorite pick as well!
This is always a fun game. An expansion would be very cool
When will we see an expansion???
It is indeed a favourite! And as often been noted, it is time that this excellent games doubled it's army count! A 4 army expansion is just crying out to be published! Bundle it with a well made battle mat (a foot bigger, more jump) and it rockets to the top of my "must buy now!" list ;)
Oh the times Jaffer and I have played this game! Awesome ^__^